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Seven Nittany Lions Listed In Pro Football Network’s 2021 NFL Mock Draft

Seven Penn State football players — Micah Parsons, Pat Freiermuth, Jayson Oweh, Rasheed Walker, Journey Brown, Shaka Toney, and Tariq Castro-Fields — are all listed in Pro Football Network’s (PFN) latest 2021 NFL Mock Draft.

The seven-round mock draft was created by PFN draft analyst Neal Driscoll.

Driscoll believes Parsons, Freiermuth, and Oweh will be first-round picks. He has the Miami Dolphins selecting Parsons at No. 5 overall. Driscoll described Parsons as a “complete linebacker, who also possesses elite pass-rushing ability” and mentioned the linebacker could become one of the best defenders in the league.

Earlier this month, Parsons announced he is opting out of Penn State football’s now-postponed season to train for the 2021 NFL Draft.

Next, Driscoll predicts the Green Bay Packers will select Freiermuth at No. 17 overall in the first round.

“Pat Freiermuth, also known as ‘Baby Gronk,’ is clearly the best tight end in the draft and immediately gives Rodgers a significant red-zone threat,” Driscoll wrote. “Buy stock in the Freiermuth Offensive Rookie of the Year train if this selection does indeed occur.”

Oweh, surprisingly, is projected to be selected No. 26 overall by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The 6′ 5″, 253-pound defensive end served as a rotational piece for Brent Pry’s defense during the 2019 season and totaled 21 tackles, five for a loss, five sacks, and two forced fumbles. Should Penn State play anytime soon, Oweh is expected to receive increased snaps due to Yetur Gross-Matos’ departure.

“He might be a little light, but there is no denying Jayson Oweh’s ability to apply pressure,” Driscoll wrote. “His burst and bend off the edge are exceptional.”

Next, Driscoll forecasts Walker heading to Arizona at No. 41 overall. The 6′ 6″, 313-pound offensive lineman made 13 stars at left tackle for the Nittany Lions during his redshirt freshman season in 2019. He was named to Pro Football Focus’ Big Ten Team of the Week following Penn State’s win against Purdue.

Brown, on the other hand, is projected to hear his name called in the third round of the draft. Driscoll believes the Atlanta Falcons would take him at No. 76 overall. Brown totaled 890 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns (12 rushing, one receiving) in his breakthrough season last year. He averaged 6.9 yards per attempt, which ranked No. 2 in the Big Ten.

Driscoll predicts Toney will head to Dallas as the No. 91 overall pick. Toney consistently served along Penn State’s defensive line throughout his three-year career and totaled 80 tackles and 15 sacks.

Driscoll said Toney is “one of the most underrated 2021 draft prospects” and added he would form “quite the tandem” with Cowboys defensive end Demarcus Lawrence.

Finally, Castro-Fields is projected to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the No. 185 overall pick. So far, he has totaled 94 tackles, 18 pass deflections, and three interceptions during his three-year Penn State career.

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About the Author

Gabe Angieri

Gabe is a senior majoring in journalism and is Onward State's managing editor. He grew up in Lindenhurst, New York, and has had the absolute misfortune of rooting for the Jets, Mets, and Knicks. If you want to see his bad sports takes, follow him on Twitter @gabeangieri and direct all hate mail to [email protected]

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